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FW: UFO ROUNDUP, Volume 4, Number 33

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  • Mr Anthony Chippendale
    UFO ROUNDUP Volume 4, Number 33 December 9, 1999 Editor: Joseph Trainor MARS POLAR LANDER VANISHES ... Climate Orbiter, the Mars Polar Lander (MPL) vanished on
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 10, 1999
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      UFO ROUNDUP
      Volume 4, Number 33
      December 9, 1999
      Editor: Joseph Trainor

      MARS POLAR LANDER
      VANISHES

      :Like its sister spacecraft, the Mars
      Climate Orbiter, the Mars Polar Lander (MPL)
      vanished on Friday, December 3, 1999 while
      on the final leg of its trip to Mars.
      The $165 million spacecraft performed almost
      flawlessly during its 11-month, 470-million-mile
      voyage to Mars. It was set to land in the planet's
      southern hemisphere near the South Pole. Upon
      landing, two $29 million electronic probes were
      to be jettisoned in order to burrow into the soil
      in search of water or ice. The probes were named
      Scott and Amundsen after two Antarctic explorers.
      The Mars Polar Lander entered the planet's
      atmosphere shortly before noon (California time).
      The spacecraft sent a radio signal acknowledging
      the launch of the Scott and Amundsen probes at
      12:06 p.m. The MPL then began a 30-minute period
      of radio silence as it descended to the surface.
      "After the first contact (with MPL) failed at
      12:39 p.m.PST, there was a second try around
      2:04 p.m. and a third try at 8:30 p.m., but there
      was no success in those efforts, either."
      "'So far I feel like I've been stood up on a date,'
      Mars program scientist Dave Crisp said late
      FRiday. But he held out hope that his date with
      Mars is not off, just late. 'If that's the case, all
      is forgiven.'"
      "Engineers kept telling the probe to scan the
      sky to look for Earth late Friday, but it couldn't
      connect."
      All day on Saturday, December 4, 1999, the
      team at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena,
      California, USA attempted to make radio contact
      with the Mars Polar Lander and its two mini-probes.
      ""Going into two more tries late Saturday, officials
      at the Jet Propulsion Lab have tried 13 times to
      contact the three different probes without
      success."
      Sunday, December 5, 1999, saw more
      heartbreaking news for MPL team members.
      "The failure to communicate with the spacecraft
      Sunday morning was a serious blow." MPL
      scientists "planned all day to try another
      method of communication at 9:40 p.m. PST, and if
      that failed, several more in the following days."
      The Mars Polar Lander had two high-tech radio
      antennae aboard. The dish-shaped medium-gain
      antenna, located on the MPL's side, had to be
      pointed directly at Earth to communicate with the
      controllers. The tube-shaped ultra-high-frequency
      (UHF) antenna on top of the probe was able to
      communicate indirectly with Earth. The UHF
      antenna could send a signal to the Mars Global
      Surveyor, already in orbit around the planet, which
      would then relay the MPL signal to Earth.
      "Just after 1 a.m. on Monday, scientists listened
      for a signal from the spacecraft's main antenna but
      heard nothing."
      On Tuesday, December 7, the MPL team
      looked for "messages from a backup (UHF) antenna
      on the lander."
      "If that failed, scientists were to make a final
      serious attempt to establish contact. They were to
      order the lander's main antenna to sweep the sky on
      Wednesday and beam signals to a wide swath of the
      universe."
      "Two pods that rode the lander to Mars and were
      supposed to probe the Martian atmosphere almost
      are certainly lost. Nothing was heard from them
      Monday, the deadline for them to make contact
      with Earth."
      Although no specific cause of the loss of the
      Mars Polar Lander has yet been announced, some
      NASA officials are speculating that the lander's
      rocket thruster fuel may have frozen during its
      long voyage through space.
      "In particular, the panel warned that the
      hydrazine fuel for the lander's retrorockets might
      freeze in space, producing ignition delays, irregular
      pulses and possibly leading to a topsy-turvy landing."
      On Tuesday, December 7, NASA officials said
      they had turned on "heaters to begin warming the
      hydrazine...before the lander began its descent
      on Friday."
      "The panel" which investigated the loss of the
      Mars Climate Orbiter ten weeks ago "expressed
      worry that the lander's 12 thrusters had 'to act in
      unison to ensure a stable descent,' and that such
      a complex feat had never been tried before."
      The loss of the Mars Polar Lander follows a
      pattern of doomed Mars missions. MPL's sister
      spacecraft, Mars Climate Orbiter, vanished while
      passing behind Mars to enter orbit. Pathfiner and
      its companion robot explorer, Sojourner, landed
      successfully on Mars but went dead six weeks
      later in 1997. The $1 billion Mars Observer
      vanished while enroute to Mars in 1993. (See
      the Minneaplois, Minn. Star-Tribune for December 8,
      1999, "NASA plans sweeping review," page 1;
      the Duluth, Minn. News-Tribune for December 4, 1999,
      "Mars probe fails to make connection with scientists"
      and December 8, 1999, "NASA report blasts inner
      workings of two Mars projects." Also USA Today
      for December 6, 1999, "Still no noise from Mars
      Polar Lander, probes;" December 7, 1999, "NASA
      prepares for last calls to silent spacecraft:' and
      December 8, 1999, "NASA may delay Mars missions."
      (Editor's Comment: Why do I get the feeling that
      the Mars Polar Lander is sitting in some giant
      saucer's cargo hold, right next to the Mars Climate
      Orbiter and the Mars Observer. Maybe the alien
      skipper plans to open a museum.)

      CYLINDRICAL UFO HOVERS
      OVER SHANGHAI

      A large light gray cylindrical UFO appeared
      over the western end of Shanghai, the largest
      city in China, and hovered there for one hour
      on Thursday afternoon, December 2, 1999.
      The hovering UFO was seen by about 100
      people and was reported in two large newspapers,
      the Shanghai Daily, and the Wenhui Daily, in
      their Friday, December 3, editions.
      Upon receiving a telephone call from an
      eyewitness, "a reporter for Wenhui Daily hurried
      to the 43rd floor of a building" and "claimed he saw
      an illuminated object stationary in the sky for
      ten minutes before it disappeared."
      Two TV stations in Shanghai broadcast color
      video footage of the UFO, described as "an object
      darting through the sky with a flaming orange tail."
      "A former researcher at the Shanghai
      Observatory, Professor Jiang Xiaoyuan, was one of
      the witnesses but he could not offer an explanation."
      "The UFO hovered over the city for an hour and
      a half, reports said."
      Radar operators at Hongqiao International Airport
      near Shanghai said they detected "nothing out of the
      ordinary" on their radar sets. (See the Chinese
      newspaper Wenhui Daily for December 3, 1999,
      "UFO appears in the sky over Shanghai." Many
      thanks to Jim Hickman of Aerial Phenomena
      Research Group for forwarding the newspaper
      article.)

      CHINESE BIGFOOT TRACKED
      AT NATURE PRESERVE

      On Sunday, December 5, 1999, the China
      Daily reported that a scientific team in the
      Shennongjia mountains of Hubeir Province, China
      had found physical evidence of a large hairy
      hominid, which they called "a wild man."
      "Standing eight feet tall with long red hair and
      a taste for corn on the cob, (China's) Big Foot is
      back and apparently running around a nature
      preserve in central China."
      "Chinese scientists are on the trail of the
      legendary beast after a hunter reported seeing a
      creature in Hubeir province in Shenongjia Nature
      Reserve two months ago, the China Daily said.
      The scientists found 16-inch footprints, brown
      hair and chewed corncobs and concluded they
      were not left by a bear." (See USA Today for
      December 8, 1999, "Big Foot Returns," page 24A)
      (Editor's Note: Reports of hairy "wild men" in the
      Shennongjia mountains of Hubei province date back
      to 2,000 B.C. More recently, Zhou Guoxing
      encountered a seven-foot-tall hominid in the
      preserve in 1977. See Unexplained Mysteries of
      the Twentieth Century by Janet and Colin Bord,
      Contemporary Books, 1982, page 207.)

      SEVEN UFOs SIGHTED IN
      BANDON, OREGON

      On Monday, November 1, 1999, eyewitness
      A.S. and 12 other witnesses saw seven "circular
      things" in the sky over Bandon, Oregon
      (population 2,215), a small town on Highway 101
      85 miles (112 kilometers) west of Roseburg.
      "I was in Bandon at 9 a.m., visiting the cheese
      factory," A.S. reported, "And all of a sudden, I saw
      a flash of gray and looked and these things were
      headed for the (Pacific) ocean, which was right
      next to a campsite."
      "They had a weird color on the bottom, like a
      little flash of blue light. They were going about
      twenty miles per hour and were three miles up.
      When I could not see them (anymore), I left my
      car." (Email Form Report)

      SILVER CYLINDRICAL UFO
      SEEN IN DANDRIDGE

      UFO hotspot Dandridge, Tennessee
      (population 1,540) is back in the news again.
      On Thursday, December 2, 1999, Patricia
      G. reports, "At 12:25 p.m. this afternoon, I was
      sky-watching and actually got lucky. A silver
      cylinder flying north to southwest was flying
      rather slowly. I'm afraid I can't tell the altitude,
      but it was large."
      "At first I thought it might be a jumbo jet,
      so I looked through my binoculars, and to my
      delight there were no wings or tail, just a smooth
      silver cylinder. There was no jetstream or contrail
      or whatever you call it."
      On Wednesday night, December 1, Patricia's
      daughter "saw a blue light that pulsated in the
      northeast sky. She said it was as large as a
      pencil eraser. She was driving home and lost
      sight of it when she got home."
      Dandridge is located 23 miles (36 kilometers)
      east of Knoxville. (Email Interview)

      GREECE DEPORTS TWO
      BORN-AGAIN CHRISTIANS

      "Two suspected members of a U.S. doomsday
      cult were deported to New York on Tuesday,"
      December 7, 1999, "the second group expelled
      from Greece ahead of the millenium."
      "Police said the two suspected cult members
      of the Denver-based group Concerned Christians
      and two children were taken into custody Monday
      (December 6, 1999) near the seaside town of
      Rafina, 15 miles (25 kilometers) east of Athens.
      Eighteen others were expelled Sunday (December 5,
      1999) amid fears that the group was planning to
      mark 2000 with mass suicide."
      "Those deported were U.S. citizens with
      expired resident permits, police said."
      "Police have been looking for other suspected
      cult members near Athens, where the group is
      thought to have settled after 14 alleged members
      were deported from Israel in January." (See UFO
      Roundup volume 4, number 2--J.T.)
      "The group's leader, Monte Kim Miller, has
      said he would die in Jerusalem this month and
      be resurrected three days later." (See the
      Minneapolis, Minn. Star-Tribune for December 8,
      1999, "Greece deports two suspected soomsday
      cult members to N.Y.," page A10.)
      Although the professed born-again Christians
      of Miller's sect have committed no crimes, they
      have been hunted and hounded by the Shin Bet,
      Israel's security police. In October, "twenty-one
      evangelical Christians, including at least 13
      Americans, were arrested in Jerusalem early
      Monday and ordered to leave Israel by Thursday."
      (See USA Today for October 26, 1999, "Israel
      orders religious groups out.")
      (Editor's Comment: So much for religious freedom
      in the NATO countries. Yeah, you can tell these
      born-agains are a bunch of "terrorists." They're
      always walking around with a KJV. That's a
      Bible, by the way, not a firearm.)

      Y2K: IT'S BEGINNING TO
      LOOK A LOT LIKE D-DAY

      December 28 is shaping up as a key day in
      the Y2K computer crisis. Several sources now
      cite this date as the launch point of the USA
      government's response to Y2K problems.
      According to WorldNet Daily, "President
      Clinton has already made plans to declare a
      national emergency because of expected
      disruptions caused by the Y2K computer problem,
      according to Federal Emergency Management
      Agency (FEMA) documents.
      "A final training session followed by a mock
      Y2K disaster exercise will include the actual
      disruptions and problems that Y2K emergency
      planners believe will take place during the
      change to the New Year."
      "Plans for the emergency" response "were
      made known to the FEMA officials and all federal
      employees in preparation for use by the Information
      Coordinating Center, run by the President's
      Council on the Year 2000 Technology Problem."
      "The staff on hand at the Information
      Coordinating Center have been told to expect a
      presidential declaration of a national emergency.
      FEMA staff who will run the actual operation
      centers have been told the same thing."
      "Should it become necessary, a presidential
      'emergency' rather than a 'major disaster,' will be
      declared, and assistance will be focused on
      determining threats to life, health, safety and
      property, the Senate committee was told in a
      report from Lacy E. Suiter from the Response
      and Recovery Directorate of FEMA."
      "A national emergency will be declared
      because FEMA officials have concluded that
      there will be more than 50 simultaneous Y2K-
      related disruptions throughout the country,
      which will stretch the nation's local, state
      and national emergency resources to the limit."
      "The (USA) Department of Defense is so
      concerned that Deputy Secretary of Defense
      John J. Hamre has issued a memorandum to
      commanders in the field to be very cautious
      about using the military to assist civilian
      agencies. Hamre said local requests for help
      might seem appropriate, but he urged local
      commanders to be cautious about using the
      military to help with Y2K disruptions."
      "'Immediate responses that appear rational
      from a local perspective, but could collectively
      undermine the Department's ability to execute
      operational missions, should be ruled out,'
      Hamre said."
      "Hamre has ordered commanders to avoid
      using the military for Y2K problems unless there
      is a threat to life or damage to property."
      "A presidential 'emergency' rather than a
      'major disaster' declaration will be made if Y2K"
      disruptions exceed state and local resources
      available to deal with them, FEMA and other
      federal employees were told at the training
      sessions. (See WorldNet Daily for December 2,
      1999, "Clinton set to declare national emergency.")
      On Wednesday, December 1, 1999, Edwards
      Air Force Base, 50 miles (80 kilometers) east of
      Los Angeles, suddenly terminated telephone and
      email communication with the outside world.
      The sudden security buildup triggered much
      speculation in the UFO community.
      According to Rev. Billy Dee of UFO Sky
      Searchers Inernational (UFOSSI), residents in
      nearby Lancaster and Palmdale, California
      "saw 20 more (UH-60) Blackhawk helicopters
      brought in, along with many Marines. The Marines
      already have several large twin and single rotor
      helicopters, and I've seen them every night this
      week, flying in groups of three over Lancaster
      and Palmdale."
      On Friday, December 3, 1999, a large truck
      convoy arrived at the base, Rev. Dee reported,
      which included "23 semis with stainless steel
      tank trailers, like fuel trucks, just plain stainless
      steel with no markings, 40 cement trucks, 13
      flatbed semis carrying pallets of plywood, and
      four flatbed semis carrying nothing but Porta-
      Potties."
      (Editor's Comment: No, I don't think the Porta-
      Potties are for aliens. Sounds like another
      big MOUT exercise to me.)
      In addition, an airman with the New York
      state Air National Guard confirmed that
      December 28 would be the date of some sort
      of gocernment response to the Y2K crisis.
      The airman, John B., told UFOSSI, "I am
      in the New York Air National Guard in an Active
      Guard Reserve status, and we were told yesterday
      (December 5, 1999) that we, as a unit in (USAF)
      Security Forces, are going to be on call from the
      28th of December to the 7th of January for Y2K.
      Not that we are going to be deployed but just on
      standby." (Many thanks to Rev. Billy Dee for
      this report.)
      (Editor's Comment: So it looks like the USA has
      joined Canada, the UK, Australia, New Zealand
      and Israel in putting troops on alert for possible
      Y2K trouble during the last week of December.
      Will Operation Abacus be launched? Stay tuned.)

      from the UFO Files...

      1864: ROSWELL IN UPSTATE
      NEW YORK?

      In 1920, horror and fantasy writer Howard Phillips
      Lovecraft (1890-1937) wrote to fellow members of the
      Gallomo literary club, talking about a strange dream
      he had recently experienced.
      "I have lately had another odd dream--specially
      singular because in it I possessed another personality--
      a personality just as definite and vivid as the
      Lovecraft personality which characterises my waking
      hours."
      "My name was Dr. Eben Spencer, and I was
      dressing before a mirror in my own room, in the
      house where I was born, in a small village (Dolgeville,
      N.Y., formerly called Brockett's Bridge--J.T.) of
      northern New York state. It was the first time I had
      donned civilian clothes in three years, for I was an
      Army surgeon with the rank of 1st Lieut.."
      "I seemed to be home on a furlough--slightly
      wounded. On the wall was a calendar reading
      FRIDAY, July 8, 1864 (Actually, July 8 that year
      was a Saturday--J.T.) I was very glad to be in
      regular attire again, though my suit was not a new
      one, but one left over from 1861."
      "After carefully tying my stock (tie), I donned
      my coat and hat, took a cane from a rack downstairs
      and sallied forth upon the village street. Soon a very
      young man of my acquaintance came up to me with
      an air of anxiety and began to speak in guarded
      accents. He wished me to go with him to his
      brother--my professional colleague Dr. Chester--
      whose actions were greatly alarming him."
      "I, having been his best friend, might have some
      influence in getting him to speak freely--for surely he
      had much to tell. The doctor for the past two years
      had been conducting secret experiments in a
      laboratory in the attic of his home, and beyond that
      locked door he would admit no one but himself.
      Sickening odours were often detected near the
      door...and odd sounds were at times not absent."
      "The doctor was aging rapidly; lines of care--
      and of something else--were creeping into his dark,
      thin face, and his hair was rapidly going grey. He
      would remain in that locked room for dangerously
      long intervals without food and seemed uncommonly
      saturnine. All questions from the younger brother
      were met with scorn or rage--with perhaps a little
      uneasiness, so the brother was much worried, and
      stopped me on the street for advice and aid."
      "I went with him to the Chester house--a white
      structure of two stories and attic in a pretty yard
      with a picket fence. It was in a quiet side street,
      where peace seemed to abide despite the trying
      nature of the times. In the darkened parlour,
      where I waited for some time, was a marble-topped
      table, much haircloth furniture and several pleasing
      whatnots covered with pebbles, curios and bric-a-
      brac. Soon Dr. Chester came down--and he had
      aged. He greeted me with a saturnine smile, and
      I began to question him, as tactfully as I could,
      about his strange actions."
      "At first he was rather defiant and insulting--
      he said with a sort of leer, 'Better not ask, Spencer!
      Better not ask!'"
      "Then when I grew persistent (for by this time I
      was interested on my own account--HPL) he changed
      abruptly and snapped out, 'Well, if you must know,
      come up.'"
      "Up two flights of stairs we plodded, and stood
      before the locked door. Dr. Chester opened it,
      and there was an odour. I entered after him, young
      Chester bringing up the rear. The room was low
      but spacious in area and had been divided into two
      parts by an oddly incongruous plush red portiere.
      In the half next (to) the door there was a dissecting
      table, many bookcases, and several imposing
      cabinets of chemical and surgical instruments.
      Young Chester and I remained here, whilst the
      doctor went behind the curtain."
      "Soon he emerged, bearing on a large glass
      slab what appeared to be a human arm, neatly
      severed just below the elbow. It was damp,
      gelatinous and bluish-white, and the fingers
      were without nails. (my emphasis--J.T.)"
      "'Well, Spencer,' said Dr. Chester sneeringly,
      'I suppose you've had a good deal of amputation
      practice in the army. What do you think,
      professionally, of this job?'"
      "I had seen clearly that this was not a human
      arm, and said sarcastically, 'You are a better
      sculptor than doctor, Chester. This is not the
      arm of any living thing.'"
      "And Chester replied in a tone that made me
      blood congeal, 'Not yet, Spencer. Not yet!'"
      "Then he disappeared again behind the portiere
      and emerged once more, bringing another and
      slightly larger arm. Both were left arms. (my
      emphasis--J.T.)"
      "I felt sure that I was on the brink of a great
      revelation, and awaited with impatience the
      tantalisingly deliberate motions of my sinister
      colleague."
      "'This is only the beginning, Spencer,' he said
      as he went behind the curtain for the third time.
      'Watch the curtain.'"
      "And now ends the fictionally available part of
      my dream, for the residue is grotesque anticlimax.
      I have said that I was in civilian clothes for the
      first time since '61 (i.e. 1861--J.T.)--and naturally
      I was rather self-conscious. As I waited for the
      final revelation, I caught sight of my reflection in
      the glass door of an instrument case and
      discovered that my very-carefully-tied stock was
      awry. Moving to a long mirror, I sought to adjust it,
      but the black bow proved hard to fashion artistically.
      And the whole scene began to fade--and damn the
      luck! I awaked in the distressful year of 1920,
      with the personality of H.P. Lovecraft restored.
      I have never seen Dr. Chester, or his young brother,
      or that village since. I do not know what village
      it was. I never heard the name of Eben Spencer
      before or since. Some dream!"
      The strange thing is, Lovecraft's "dream" has
      roots in reality. There really was a Lieutenant
      Spencer. He was 1st Lieutenant E. Gary Spencer
      of the 94th New York Regiment, U.S. Army,
      and he was born in 1839 in the small town of
      Brockett's Bridge, N.Y., in the foothills of
      the Adirondack Mountains. I've seen the house
      where he was born. It's still standing! (See
      Selected Letters of H.P. Lovecraft, volume 1,
      Arkham House, Sauk City, Wisconsin, 1965,
      pages 100 to 102.)
      Next Week: In Search of Doc Chester's
      Unusual Houseguest.

      Unless Y2K comes early, we'll be back in
      seven days with more UFO and paranormal news
      from around the planet--and some pretty strange
      documentation from upstate New York--all brought
      to you by "the paper that goes home--UFO Roundup.
      See you then!

      UFO ROUNDUP: Copyright 1999 by Masinaigan
      Productions, all rights reserved. Readers may post
      news items from UFO Roundup on their websites
      or in news groups provided that they credit the
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      of issue in which the item first appeared.
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